So just who is Marion Cotillard playing in The Dark Knight Rises [SPOILER WARNING]

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There’s been much ado about Marion Cotillard lately. Uniting with her Inception director, Chris Nolan, on The Dark Knight Rises, it’s been almost universally accepted that the talented French actress will be taking on the role of… Well, I guess this is where I put up that pesky SPOILER WARNING for those of you that want to go into this movie completely fresh.

For the rest of you, read on!

Right, all the stragglers gone? Good. Now as I was saying, since it’s been all but confirmed that Liam Neeson’s Ra’s al Ghul would be returning for this final chapter in Nolan’s Batman trilogy, it’s always been assumed that Cotillard would be taking on the role of his vengeful daughter and Batman/Bruce Wayne’s love interest in the comics, Talia, but using the non de plume of Miranda Tate. This was sort of confirmed by young actress Joey King who was apparently asked to play the role of a young Talia, as well as the latest trailer clearly showing Bruce and Talia engaged in some passionate lip-locking.

But now, in an interview given with The Hollywood Reporter, Cotillard has come out and outright denied that she will be taking on the role of Talia. According to the actress, Miranda Tate is just a businesswoman who “is fascinated by Wayne Enterprises. They go through difficulties, and she wants to help provide the world clean energies. She’s a good guy.”

When asked if she retains that “good guy” status throughout the film, seeing as Talia has always had a looser definition of the law than Batman, she responded with an unequivocal “Yes.”

Except, I’m not quite sure I believe her.

Just like in the case of Joseph Gordon Levitt, I just can’t see Chris Nolan introducing these high-profile, extremely talented actors to take on what are, on paper (at least the paper they’ve shown us), essentially bit parts. Especially since, in both cases, the characters they are playing have zero history in the source material. Nolan has always put his own spin on the Batman lore, but he still essentially stuck to it. Throwing in new, totally unrelated characters now in the final chapter of his story just makes no sense to me.

With the level of secrecy that Nolan employs on his movies, and how stringently he ensures that his actors give away nothing about a film’s plot, this candid reveal from Cotillard also comes as a bit of a surprise. Which leads me to believe that Nolan may just be pulling out the smoke and mirrors on this one. I certainly would not be surprised at all to find that the actors were instructed to outright lie about who they were playing.

So what do you guys think? Is my tin foil hat wrapped too tight on my head, or should we just accept what Ms Cottillard has told us?

Last Updated: May 11, 2012

Kervyn Cloete

A man of many passions - but very little sleep - I've been geeking out over movies, video games, comics, books, anime, TV series and lemon meringues as far back as I can remember. So show up for the geeky insight, stay for the delicious pastries.

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